The Buffalo News: "Kid Rock treats fans to a high-energy show"
August 05, 2015

Kid Rock fans know how to party … hard.

Despite a torrential downpour that left many of the early tailgaters waterlogged, fans of renegade rocker Kid Rock weren’t fazed as the cigar-chomping, beer-chugging bad boy from Michigan took to the stage at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center for the latest stop on his “First Kiss Cheap Date” tour.

Before the sun set, Foreigner opened the night with a 60-minute set of classic hits, including “Feels Like the First Time,” “Dirty White Boys,” and an encore that included arguably their biggest ballad, “I Wanna Know What Love Is.” Though faithful fans of the Lou Gramm-led Foreigner may consider the current line-up little more than a cover band, after a decade at the helm, frontman Kelly Hansen has earned his stripes and does justice to one of rock’s best catalogues.

But as the sky darkened and the lights went down, the capacity crowd packed into the performing arts center rose and Bob Ritchie strode out onto the stage and wasted no time in proving why he is the best ticket in music today.

Kid got the crowd to its feet and kept it there for the rest of the night with his blue-collar everyman’s mix of hip-hop, Southern rock and country.

Kid bounded around the stage with the energy of a man half his age and treated his fans to a set list that covered all of the many genres he has explored in a chart-topping career that has earned him five Grammy nominations and album sales of more than 25 million in the U.S.

When he broke into 2008’s “All Summer Long,” his first song to reach the top ten on the country charts, if there had been a roof on Darien Lake, his fans very well might have blown it off.

Music aside for a moment, a tip of the trucker cap to Kid Rock for his $20-ticket policy, a throwback to the days of rock and roll when a pair of tickets and a night out weren’t on par with a mortgage payment. But beyond affordability, kudos for delivering the best live show you’ll ever see. His passion for his craft and energy are both obvious and contagious.

He may not have the strongest voice, or a genre he can call his own, and with ten studio albums he has never landed a No. 1 single, but Kid Rock has more than all of that – he has an understanding of what it means to be a performer, and he knows how to deliver a night of entertainment that leaves his fans clamoring for more.